Burson_Soloist_sl_front_150

A focused Musician
The Soloist SL is a concentrated version of our award winning Soloist. Its DNA is identical to the Soloist and it exists for one purpose only. That is to be one of the best headphone amplifiers in the world.

Just like the Soloist, the Soloist SL is completely discrete in design. (IC free). It features the same 21 component Field Effect Transistor input stage and the same discrete power supply network which brought popularity to the original. Assembled with the same high end components and operating in pure Class-A, the Soloist SL carries the same sonic signature which has been described as the utmost in organic and transparent.

 

A new level in our understanding

Most headphone amplifiers use standard IC Opamps in their designs. Such opamps are very cheap and easy to apply, however they are inferior (learn more). This is because they are not tailored for a particular audio circuitry, and they contain many low quality and unnecessary components (learn more) which degrade audio signals.

Three years ago we developed the HA-160 headphone amplifier. Instead of using standard IC opamps on the signal path, we designed tailor made circuitry using high quality discrete components. Because of this, we were able to reduce components on the signal path to optimise its operation. It offered higher resolution and superior dynamics to any IC based design, and yet presented a mid range intonation that many thought only possible from top-tier tube amps. It was good, like a properly designed solid state should, and many in the industry saw it as a benchmark.

Instead of celebrating and introducing "newer" versions each year with small refinements, we have been studying and developing circuitries that can realise more of our ideals. Now, our dream of an even more idealistic circuitry, with even less components on the signal path is realised. And it sounds more beautiful than any of us could have conceptualised at the beginning of this project. We named this new headphone amp Soloist!

The New FET input stage

The input stage of the Soloist is a symmetrical current feedback circuit with only 21 components on its signal path (compare that to a typical IC Opamp of over 50). It's signal path is so short and with so little blockage on it, that it can achieve amazing sound. Also because we only had to select and match 21 components, the Soloist sounds absolutely amazing.

 

At 14cm * 8cm * 21cm it sits elegantly on any desktop. But with 2 Watts per channel into 16ohm, the Soloist SL is one of the most powerful headphone amps in the world. It is capable of driving most if not all headphones to their full potential. Coupled with a 2 level gain switch, it offers infinite flexibility.

 

The Soloist SL is housed in a refined and precision folded 3 mm aluminium casing that is unmistakably Burson. This case also works as a singular heat-sink for the entire machine ensuring stable and optimized performance at all times. This case really puts the conventional 1 mm folded steel case and generic heat fins to shame.

Variable Output Stage (VOS)

The Soloist SL features a new Variable Output Stage (VOS). It enables the Soloist SL to match well with any type of headphone. Be it easy to drive high sensitivity in ear monitors or open back moving-coil designs. It can drive anything including the latest planar magnetic headphones with ease.

Combining the VOS with high quality ALPS Potentiometer, volume control is always smooth and synergy is always perfect.

Low Noise power supply

An athlete needs clean air to perform at an optimum standard – audio equipment needs clean power to reproduce transparent and natural music.


The new Soloist has taken the already fanatical IC free power supply of our first generation HA-160 to the next level. The result is even cleaner even more energetic music reproduction.